Right to bare ass: Glee girls GQ outrage just fuels the fire
Looks like the glee club kids at McKinley High have been hiding a couple surprises.
Yes, these teens once thought to be harmless losers in need of a slushie to the face have come out as bonafied sex fiends, posing provocatively for a shoot entitled "Glee Gone Wild!" for GQ magazine.
Taking advantage of high school nerds? How disgusting could GQ get?! It looks like the Parents Television Council agrees.
“It is disturbing that GQ, which is explicitly written for adult men, is sexualizing the actresses who play high school-aged characters on ‘Glee’ in this way. It borders on pedophilia. Sadly, this is just the latest example of the overt sexualization of young girls in entertainment,” said PTC President Tim Winter.
Whoa, I'm sorry.... these ladies are actresses?
Upon further research, we've learned that Lea Michelle and Dianna Agron are paid television actors and are actually 24 years old. So I'm having a hard time working up some outrage that they want to pose for a men's magazine in short skirts, bras and no pants. Hey, Lady Gaga is 24 and she hasn't worn pants since 2003. And their photo shoot co-star Cory Monteith, who basically just stands around with a goofy grin and cops the occasional feel (similar to his role on Glee), is 28.
The Glee GQ cover is only the latest in a long and proud tradition of taking adults who play teens and pushing the envelope by "subverting" their teen persona with a shoot that's both youthful and sexual. It's been a favorite gimmick of Rolling Stone ever since a 17-old Britney Spears caused a sensation in a bra with a Teletubby and a pink phone on pink satin sheets.
So why not Buffy the Vampire Slayer (actually Sarah Michelle Gellar, real age 20 at the time of her shoot) in a red leather bustier, fishnets and thigh-highs? Why not the dueling divas of Gossip Girl (Blake Lively, 21, and Leighton Meester, 22) licking the same ice cream cone? There's even a Glee version — apparently Lea Michelle really likes showing off her booty.
I mean, when you're known for playing a teenager, how long are you defined by that role? Minka Kelly is only famous for playing cheerleader Lyla Garrity on Friday Night Lights (and dating Derek Jeter), but there was nary a peep when she was named Esquire's Sexiest Woman Alive last month. Is that because she was 26 when she got the part? Or because she didn't bother with the school uniform and just posed in her underwear?
Whether these shoots are actually interesting rather than just easy or attention-getting is a different question. (And the fact that the Glee GQ cover and the Gossip Girl Rolling Stone set were both shot by notedpervert Terry Richardson is another story altogether.) But disturbing, exploitative and "border[ing] on pedophilia" they aren't.
The Parents Television Council, who argued that Glee is the natural heir to High School Musical, argues that the show is a family show and the cast should reflect that. In case the on-stage groping and references to scissoring didn't make it obvious, Glee is to squeaky-clean High School Musical what Cosmopolitan is to Tiger Beat. And it case we've forgotten, High School Musical stars like to get nasty, too.
The best way to get rid of the trite sexy-pretend-high-school-girls shoots is to stop acting like they are so risque. Feigning outrage only fuels the media cycle and ends up getting the mag even more publicity, which is exactly what it wanted in the first place.